Q2: in order to maximise audio quality
In order to maximize audio quality you would eliminate the processors and multi-channel altogether. In order to maximize audio quality your home theater would be two channel. Sell everything surround, buy more subs. All movies regardless of when they were made or how they were recorded play just fine in stereo. Only the sound quality is way better. Seriously.https://systems.audiogon.com/systems/8367
millercarbon follows this forum just to post opinions to kill multi-channel audio.
As to your question, Atmos is encoded into normal Dolby True HD. This is only done through bluray players and it is fully backwards compatible to normal True HD. Probably your best bet is to get a bluray player that will down-convert this to old fashion Dolby Digital through digital COAX cable.
Otherwise, the least expensive processor that will do what you want is something like a used Marantz AV7702 which goes for around $1,000 plus or minus.
millercarbon's act is so tired and old. Totally full of himself!
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Miller Solid Core Door.....really?
I think he forgot to list:
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Thanks for the entertaining replies; and the link to that extraordinary system. It puts my attention to detail to shame. I have tried TV in stereo (with my 2 REL subs), but I prefer surround; would especially miss the centre channel. The Marantz is too expensive for what it will give me over my old Primare P30. The bluray idea is interesting, but I don´t quite understand it. How would I find one that down-converts as you say, or will any do this? Will any player receive a digital signal from the TV? Aside from down-converting would it do anything else? Specifically, I would want to avoid it making any DA conversion, especially given that it should be a cheap player. Can you suggest a cheap player that will work? Thanks
Is the TV your source? If so, then you are using a "SmartTV" that supports stuff like streaming. Most streaming uses Dolby Digital Plus or Dolby Digital. It's possible you could connect the toslink digital output of your TV directly to your Primare P30.
Are you using a different source? This question about Dolby Atmos may not apply.
Sorry, I perhaps my question was not clear enough. Yes, the primary source is the Smart TV, which is connected to the P30 via toslink. The main problem is that Netflix seems to use Dolby Digital Plus, which the P30 cannot process properly. Atmos is not really relevant at this stage.
You are kind of stuck unless you get some other source that will stream netflix. You could try getting a low cost Sony bluray player. They are generally pretty flexible and they will stream netflix. I would suggest the BDP-6700 for $99 at a minimum. It may decode Dolby Digital Plus and down-covert to normal Dolby Digital over coax.
With my LG I used the TV to do the conversion. It outputs either stereo or 5.1 via the optical output from HDMI sources.
I use Roku as my source more often than the TV because it has channels my LG does not, but the LG and Roku apps both come out the optical out, and it worked great to my stereo DAC, but I've since gotten an Anthem AVP (old school, no Atmos) and am using the ARC (which has a dedicated HDMI connection).
Thanks for your comments. It seems the problem might lie with my TV, which would be annoying as it is a brand new top range Samsung Q90. It appears that when external sources are connected by HDMI into the TV and Toslink audio out, then there is no option but to have the audio in PCM format. Other sources are enabled for Dolby Digital. I need to play with it for while. This article is useful:https://www.rtings.com/tv/tests/inputs/5-1-surround-audio-passthrough
Hi garbo. I have the same exact problem with my Oppo 103 player. When I stream netflix, it normally comes down in Dolby Digital Plus format. When I try to use digital COAX, it just doesn't work. I only get the left/right channel, or I have to tell the Oppo to convert to PCM (like your TV). I didn't seem to have this problem when streaming netflix over a Sony bluray player and outputting on digital COAX.
Ok, this might make me look stupid, but here goes; it wasn´t stated in the instructions: the TV settings are source specific. I was able to change my sound setting for Netflix to DD and now I get it in surround!
I am unable to do similar for external sources (my computer) connected to the TV via HDMI; sound via Toslink from the TV seems to be in stereo. However, there appears to be a work around; I tried the HDMI link just for the picture and took the accompanying audio direct from my Mac to the processor, via USB/SPDIF converter to get it to the Coax input. The sound is far superior. Maybe not definitive; still working on it.
That's great! Good luck on the s/pdif. A USB/SPDIF reclocker like the Wyred 4 Sound "uLINK" can really improve your sound, but they can definitely get expensive. They are much better than the $30 converters on amazon/ebay. You could experiment with cheap one first. A lot of this 5.1 audio is from configuration in your computer and software. I know that JRiver media player does support 5.1 digital output for surround sound through both HDMI and SPDIF. You could also try a bluray player software, such as PowerDVD, if you wanted.
I bought the USB/SPDIF converter 12 years ago, a HagUSB. The sound seems good, but I have nothing to compare it to.
My Yamaha CX-A5200 as bypass which Gene at Audioholics tested and said did in fact function correctly. Just for fun, I ran some reference streamers and DACs through it and you know what? Sounded pretty spectacular considering i was using a freakin yamaha.
Not sure if the unit will downconvert everything to dolby digital, however.